We must fully harmonise these specific rules to allow distance traders and direct sellers to move beyond their national borders. For example, EU rules on the proposed 14-day cooling off period and standard withdrawal forms will give distance traders and direct sellers the legal certainty they need for simplified cross-border trade, while at the same time giving consumers certainty that the cooling off period is the same from wherever they purchase a product in Europe.
Contract law: As Justice Commissioner in charge of civil and commercial law, I also know that beyond the Consumer Rights Directive, there remains a fundamental discussion about the divergences between national contract laws. That is why just before the summer, the Commission proposed several policy options for a possible European contract law. This important public consultation runs until the end of January 2011. The first priority is cutting red tape. This goes for businesses and consumers. For businesses: It's clear why they are reluctant to trade across borders. There are differences between national contract laws that entail additional transaction costs, fees and further legal uncertainty.